Pregnancy in lupus

Curr Opin Rheumatol. 1999 Sep;11(5):348-51. doi: 10.1097/00002281-199909000-00004.


Patients with systemic lupus erythematosus with established disease have poorer pregnancy outcomes than do women with later onset disease. Active renal disease and maternal hypertension are important predictors of fetal loss and premature birth, respectively. Placental pathology in SLE patients is characterized by decidual vasculopathy and infarction, and in APLS patients, infarction can be extensive. Maternal anti-52 kD SSA/Ro by immunoblot continues to be an important risk factor for having a child with heart block. The risk of having a subsequent child with congenital heart block ranges between 12-16%. Childhood morbidity with heart block is high, with 63% eventually requiring pacemakers. In APLS, antiB2GP-I antibodies can have a significant role in the diagnosis, especially when the traditional assays for aCL antibodies and LAC are negative. Some obstetricians have found that IVIG improves the birthrate in aPL positive women who have recurrent spontaneous abortions after IVF.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / immunology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / immunology*
  • Pregnancy Outcome